As part of its efforts to combat HIV, the United States intends to provide up to $90 million to build secondary schools across Malawi and additional funding to provide youth friendly health services.
The U.S. signed a Memorandum of Understanding, or MOU, with Malawi in July to expand existing secondary schools and install new secondary schools throughout Malawi.
In the MOU, the government of Malawi committed to fund training and salaries for teachers to staff the new schools, and maintenance of the new structures; to support the provision of youth friendly health services near secondary schools; to incorporate comprehensive sex education in the national curriculum to keep young people HIV-free; and to enact a phased-in reduction of secondary school tuition fees.
Malawi’s Minister of Education, Science and Technology Bright Msaka said, “I am very excited to sign this Memorandum of Understanding on the expansion of secondary education. We are confident that this increased access to education will reduce the transmission of HIV to Malawi’s youth and help us break the back of the HIV epidemic.”
Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Affairs Emmanuel Fabiano concurred, saying: “This will contribute to the sustainable socio-economic development of Malawi.”
“Through this commitment, the United States and Malawi will ensure more adolescent girls attend secondary school, which will better keep them HIV free,” said U.S. Ambassador to Malawi Virginia Palmer.
“Studies have shown that for every year a girl attends secondary school her risk of contracting HIV throughout her lifetime decreases. The first tender is out to increase the number of classrooms in urban secondary schools across Malawi. Malawi’s program will demonstrate the critical link between girls’ education and public health for the rest of Africa and the world, and provide important benefits for Malawi’s development.”